Welcome to the New Shacknews

You're currently viewing the beginning of a full site renovation for Shacknews.com. You might find something working oddly. If you do, let us know! More exciting new features to follow.

Portal 2 Writer Erik Wolpaw Leaves Valve

Wolpaw was a driving force in writing the story and dialogue for Portal 2.


Erik Wolpaw has left his job as a writer at Valve Corporation, according to a tip given to Gamasutra.  "Last day at Valve!" Wolpaw wrote in a Facebook status update. "People marching their crap out of the office in a box is the central theme of 90% of what [Jay] Pinkerton and I write, and now I'm finally doing it for real."

Wolpaw's departure come one year and change after Half-Life writer Marc Laidlaw moved on from Valve. "@Wolpaw left Valve so I can now insult him freely without damaging the company's reputation," Laidlaw joked in a tweet from earlier today. "He's a comic genius and a true original."

Wolpaw was instrumental in writing Valve's Portal and Portal 2 puzzlers. He joined the company in 2004 and helped shape several heavy hitters in Valve's catalog, including Half-Life 2: Episodes One and Two, as well as Left 4 Dead 1 and Left 4 Dead 2.

As for what he'll be up to next, Wolpaw is listed as a writer for Double Fine's upcoming Psychonauts 2, although his work could be nearly finished depending on how early he got involved on the project.

Although long-time fans of their work are no doubt disappointed to see Wolpaw go, his departure is more disappointing than surprising. Half-Life 3 may or may not be happening, depending on who you ask and the day of the week, and Valve seems focused on multiplayer-centric games, leaving little for on-staff writers to do other than write hat descriptions. 

Writers' room at Valve.

Contributing Editor

From The Chatty

  • reply
    February 17, 2017 1:45 PM

    David Craddock posted a new article, Portal 2 Writer Erik Wolpaw Leaves Valve

    • reply
      February 17, 2017 1:46 PM

      lol that caption

    • DM7
      February 17, 2017 2:13 PM

      The Valve of olde is fading away. That's what happens when the company doesn't make games anymore. :(

      • reply
        February 17, 2017 2:29 PM

        Supposedly they have 3 games in the pipeline. Also they make games, I just don't want to play them. I had my share of camperstrike until 1.6, tf2 before it turned into a hat mining factory (even shackers would hound you for that one shitty virtual item rotting away in your inventory) and dota (not that I played more than a couple of hours).

    • reply
      February 17, 2017 5:36 PM

      what does he mean by that quote about people marching their stuff out being the theme in all their work? is that some reference i'm not getting?

      also you missed a word in that last punchline fyi

    • reply
      February 17, 2017 5:50 PM

      I'm kind of ok with that. It didn't feel like he was doing a whole lot at Valve after Portal 2 and he's too good of a comedy writer to just be doing their non-game stuff like the comics.

    • reply
      February 18, 2017 5:29 AM

      lol, DAT CAPTION on the photo is awesome.